MoEF to hear plea against LG for leak
MoEF has asked representatives from LG polymers to produce salient features of the project, the related environmental issues, and the proposed environmental management plan while examining the May 7 tragedy
Hyderabad: An expert committee at the ministry of environment and forest (MoEF) will hear on May 19 allegations of violations by LG Polymers, leading to the styrene leak in Visakhapatnam that left 12 persons dead and landed over 500 in hospital.Sources in MoEF said that the video conference would examine allegations of violation of terms of reference for manufacturing polystyrene and expandable polystyrene, while raising total capacity to 655 tonnes per day from 415 tonnes per day by LG Polymers in Visakhapatnam.MoEF has asked representatives from LG polymers to produce salient features of the project, the related environmental issues, and the proposed environmental management plan while examining the May 7 tragedy.The expert committee is likely to grill the company over the tragedy, sources said. A case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder is already booked against the company.
Environment conservationist and general secretary of Janasena Party Bolisetty Satyanarayana said, “MoEF can cancel the ToR for the expansion of the LG Polymers Unit and clearances given previously if it fails to satisfy all the norms as per the Indian environmental laws. A proper enquiry has to be done to find out the composition of the gas that was leaked, and whether it was mixed with some other harmful chemicals,”Meanwhile, officials at the inspector of factories said that styrene shifting from the mishap locality would be completed by Monday morning. KBS Prasad, deputy chief inspector of factories (Visakhapatnam) said they have so far shifted 8,000 tonnes of styrene monomer from the LG Polymers site.“We are shifting 5,000 tonnes by Monday morning. The styrene will be taken to Vizag port and from there to South Korea. As people have already returned to their houses, we are ensuring safety. Regarding probe, we are assisting the government-appointed committee,” he said.The police investigation into the styrene vapour leak is underway.“I took the investigation into the case of culpable homicide temporarily as the West DCP is on leave. We are waiting for the report of inspector of factories on the issue,” Visakhapatnam (Dwaraka zone) assistant commissioner of police RVSN Murthy said.